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1970's

A decade of great activity including courtship, marriage and house purchase.
Residences: 1970: Gower road 1972: Rented a flat 1974: Bought a house
work: Williams and Glyn's Bank at 1970-Levenshulme (branch now closed)
1971 poynton and disley 1972 stockport
1974 handforth and wilmslow 1979 manchester
Relief work at many branches including just in 1970:
2.1.70 London Road, Manchester (now closed); 7-9.1.70 Cheadle Hulme Mellor Rd (now rebuilt)
13 2 70 Cheadle Hulme Church Road; 17.2.70 Withington Hospital (branch now closed); 19 and 20 2 70 Marple;
15 4 70 Marple 16.4.70 Withington Hospital; 17.4.70 Cheadle 23.6.70-Northenden;
24 and 25.6.70 Miles Platting (branch now closed); 13 to 24.6.70 Marple; 14 8 70-Longsight (with a girl on relief from HULL); 14-26.9.70-Marple 5 to 9 10 70 Davenport
This does not indicate a well run Bank! The short visit to Cheadle in April was to have a strong effect on my career a decade later.

Sold my Trio short wave radio in 1970 and bought a Grundig Music Boy radio in School Lane, Heaton Chapel with the proceeds. This radio still in use in 2013.

Early in 1970 attended Reddish Green Methodist Church (by the 1980's this was a block of flats) with Cathy, regular minister was Rev Jessop, and one or two services were taken by Arthur Connop. I had morning duties giving the hymn books out, was once saddled - with no training- with a Sunday School class, and even hand pumped the small organ. The organ still survives in 2012 in a nearby church with a name that confuses me- united or uniting or something silly. It is a mechanical tracker organ and has been recorded for posterity on youtube.
Mum and Dad visited Gran in Northop quite frequently in early 1970
Gran visited us 28.3.70

1.1.70 Started the year working at Levenshulme-branch which closed 11am on that day, not yet a Bank Holiday.

10 and 11.1.70- Visited Southport as guest of christian mission.
During 1970 the Royal Bank of Scotland merged two of its English trading names, and Williams Deacon's and Glyn Mills Bank became Williams and Glyn's, with no apostrophe on the Williams.

As I have full details of the concerts I attended in 1970 I will list them to illustrate the number of concerts I attended and the different types of concert (although mainly pop / rock):
24 1 70 Organ recital at Manchester Cathedral by Nicholas Danby. There are not so many organ recitals at the Cathedral in the 21st century but we still attended one in 2011.
26 1 70 failed driving test on first attempt
1st Feb 1970- Syd Lawrence Orch at the Davenport, presented by the Vernon County Infant School, Poynton.
3 2 70 NICE (with Keith Emerson) at Free Trade Hall
14 2 70 Deep Purple concert

21 2 70- Booker T and the MGs (Green Onion) at Free Trade Hall then on to CIS New Century Hall for a disco- my dancing much admired with girls screaming, collapsing on floor, etc etc and leading to a free coke from one of their boyfriends. Fun.

24.2.70-on holiday, met Cath in Manchester and took her to lunch at the bank staff canteen, Mosley Street (then at No 45 Mosley St- no longer Bank premises)
7.3.70 saw In the Steps of the Fisherman, film, ABC Deansgate - a rare public showing on the cinema screen.
7.3.70 bought records-Love Sculpture, Canned Heat, Deep Purple
16 3 70 Passed driving test on second attempt
21 3 70 Musical HAIR at Manchester Palace theatre
25 3 70- Film West Side Story at Studio 2 Manchester then back to Caths until 0100
1.4.70 Film Two a Penny, Studio 1 Manchester- with Cath - Billy Graham film with Cliff Richard which was filmed back in 1967.


4.4.70 Film-Paint Your Wagon with Mum, on the large screen (they are so much smaller these days, what happened to 70mm super panavision?)
11.4.70 Trial by Jury and HMS Pinafore at Opera House

18 4 70 Fiddler on the Roof (theatre)

24 4 70 Glenn Miller Orchestra at Free Trade Hall Manchester then over to Houldsworth Hall for a "Benefit gig" in aid of struggling alternative" magazine It.
27.4.70 with Cath to Poco a Poco for concert by a lone David Bowie with accoustic guitar, plus Barclay James Harvest and Purple Gang. Thirty years later and Bowie and Purple Gang were still recording. Bowie was due to appear with a newish group called Hype. It has been reported that Hype were unable to appear as the drummer had hurt his finger. Or maybe there was a disagreement of some sort. Bowie performed a few solo concerts at this time, and Hype never did record a record. Some people would have cancelled their appearance- Bowie came and sang for us, just him and an accoustic 12 string guitar, whilst the third act set up on stage. Nice chap. David was the second act to perform. It was a long evening, and we seem to have missed completely the final headline act, High Tide! It was reported later that David slept at Stockport Railway Station as he missed the train on the way back home. There were many there that night who would have been delighted to lend him a bed and offer breakfast!

11 5 70- John Mayall concert- a local lad now living in America, a leading blues man, hardly recognised in his home land, he is still giving Manchester concerts thirty years later.His brother Rik is perhaps better known in the UK.
20 5 70- Tom Paxton concert
23.5.70 Mum and Dad visit Northop. Cath visits.

5th to 6th June 1970 Overnight concert in Buxton, finishing 6am, with Coloseum, Taste, Atomic Rooster, Strawbs etc. I don't recall but Rick Wakeman was playing with the Strawbs. Barclay James Harvest were listed but no-shows. The groups were- Flaming Youth (who?), Strawbs, Savoy Brown, Atomic Rooster, Taste, Colosseum, Daddy Long Legs, Matthew's Southern Comfort, Justine (I loved them), Gracious, Stack Waddy, Weeping Sac, Panic, Charge, and Elias Hulk. Not a bad line up for 27/6 (thats GBP 1.37 in new money).

13.6.70 Soft Machine concert in Manchester.


20 6 70 Keef Hartly Big Band at Free Trade Hall- line up included Barbara Thompson, Henry Lowther, Dave Caswell, Lyle Jenkins, Gary Thain, Miller Anderson... and then on to Joynson Memorial Hall, Hooton St, Ancoats, Manchester for an all night gig. Closed at 2.30am on recommendation of police after trouble outside.

27.6.70 My mum and dad left Gower Road 10am for a weekend away, and Cathy arrived 11am.

28 6 70 Belle Vue Manchester- Poporama- got autographs of top national DJs Tony Blackburn, Dave Eager and Stuart Henry.
18.7.70 Incredible String Band concert at Stockport College (this group played at Woodstock -and refused to be filmed!!!). One of this group (female) later became Mayoress of Aberystwyth, and many years later my son went to University there.... Records show this group played in Manchester on this date- possibly they played two venues, as I do recall them playing near the door rather than on the stage.

4.8.70 Mr Glover replaced Mr Davies as Manager at Levenshulme


Mr Glover was alas an alcoholic, genial but a bit of a liability.
6.8.70 Took photos of Jayne Scott in Levenshulme branch- one appeared on my web site 1998

29 8 70- left Manchester at midnight on long bus journey to LECH in Austria, arriving after 36 hours non stop travel including ferry Folkestone-Ostend. From Ostend through Germany to Austria. The bus was driven by a German speaking driver, I was part of a small group of Brits travelling largely with Flemish speaking Belgians! Met Linda Slade from Nottingham.

Although booked into a hotel, I was put into a rather distant and quite separate smaller building known as Jagerheim, where I had breakfast but had to walk into town to the hotel for other meals. I was also away from the small English contingent, there was an English girl in the room below, otherwise conversation had to be in German, which I didn't know...
Good hillwalking.

2.9.70 Visited Liechtenstein. Nice church. I was served in the local cafe by a girl from England.
4.9.70 Late night bedroom visit to Diane from Chichester "to check film stuck in her camera" (no film in camera). She had just had a shower and was in a bathrobe- a totally platonic visit. Did she want something else?
7/9/70 stayed at 42 york st and 8/9/70 at 41 York st London...
visited national gallery, victoria and albert, natural history, science,sloane and British museums
8 9 70 Charlie Girl, musical, Adelphi Theatre London with Anna Neagle and Derek Nimmo
10 9 70 watched movie Woodstock in cinema
11 9 70 revisited Wimbledon and took pics. Went to see the film "Toomorrow" with Olivia Newton John- another rarity. Shown for one week at the Pavilion before the director (who was also the writer) took out an injunction preventing its being shown until he was paid. The film disappeared until the producer died and the writer licenced a dodgy video copy for DVD release over 40 years later in 2013... Featured a young Livvy fronting a pop group. The dvd was released by a budget label. This was full of encoding errors and a single track mono soundtrack, and seems to have been sourced from a known pirate English videotape. Not very sure about copyright but in UK law a film director is considered the creator.

12.9.70 Free concert at Hyde Park with Eric Burden and War, John Sebastian, and Canned Heat (and lots of rain); then the musical PROMISES PROMISES at the Prince of Wales theatre London

9.9.70 HAIR in London then back to Manchester...
3rd Oct 1970- concert by Men O Brass- the combined bands of Fairey, Fodens and Morris, conducted by Harry Mortimer.

7.10.70 THE WHO in concert at Manchester.
21.10.70 Wisdom Tooth extracted at Stepping Hill- not a simple 2 day job due to total lack of post operative care: in Stepping Hill Hospital until 24/10 then an ambulance ride to the infirmary on 29/10 staying there until 31.10.70 - not back to work until 16th November 1970.
25.11.70 Edwin Hawkins Singers with Mum (hit-Oh Happy Day) They used the Free Trade Hall PA system- too quiet and poor quality.
7.12.70 Emerson Lake & Palmer concert (Pictures at an Exhibition)
11.12.70 Last days work at Levenshulme branch
11.12.70 Concert at Stockport College by Keef Hartley, with a couple of strippers, and Purple Gang playing in the foyer. The admission charge was ten shillings (50p in decimal).
14.12.70 Started work at Poynton office (a 2 person office)
19 12 70- Film- I am curious yellow, at Manchester Film Theatre- then a private members only showing, this once daring film was later released on dvd as a mere 15 Certificate. How times change. Went with an old school chum Phil Bailey, who was later to be my best man.
21.12.70- Pink Floyd concert in Manchester with Cath- highly amplified snap crackle and pop breakfast! This incidentally is one fact that wikipedia insists didn't happen as there are two published books that say they only performed the breakfast in Sheffield. I was there in Manchester and recorded it in my diary on the day. The two reliable books are wrong as unfortunately remains wikipedia.

31.12.70 Church service at St Thomas Heaton Chapel with Cath

28/1/71- A B C Cinema Stockport (aka Ritz) with Cath to see Johnny Cash The Man His World His Music. The cinema in 2012 is a car park, its Wurlitzer organ went first to Clydebank and is now in a different Scots venue.

29.1.1971 Keef Hartley (and Third Ear Band) - with Barbara Thompson, Miller Anderson and Wynder K Frogg on organ. Superb.- concert in Manchester Free Trade Hall.
Feb 1971- England ditches pounds shilling and pence in favour of decimal money- as a result half a day off work as banks closed and nothing to do.

4.2.71 Concert by the Halle Orchestra, conducted by Bruno Moderna, pieces included Varese Integrales and Ligeti's Atmospheres (with piano played by two percussionists...)
24.2.71 Ralph McTell concert
8.3.71 John Mayall concert in Manchester.

19.3.71 Segovia concert in Manchester. A great experience.

22 3 71- Emerson Lake and Palmer concert- as the mixing desk took up our seats on the back of the stalls we were given by way of replacement the best seats in the house- the front of the circle. Wow.
29.3.1971 Concert in Manchester by Soft Machine (was Karl Jenkins with them then?)

15.5.71 HAIR in Manchester again
9.10.1971 Hawkwind Concert. Unlit stage with one strobe lite.
1.11.71- Organ recital at Manchester Cathedral by Derrick Cantrell.

1971- First holiday with Cathy- in Austria- Langenfeld. Ferry from Dover then bus. Nice unspoilt valley with good walking. Visited Innsbrook in Austria and Oberammergau in Germany. Also Schloss Linderhof. We booked single rooms but when we got there found we were in a double. Oh well.

1972- Holiday in Lake District with Cath- perhaps a little overenthusiastic, involving lots of walking. Started at Sleagill- then on to Wasdale- bad news, the farm had had a death leaving us a little stranded. Walking from Wasdale in the rain I was hit from behind and spent some days at Whitehaven Hospital, and for some years had a weakened left leg which can still ache a bit if I stand on it too long.

Married. Cath's parents not very supportive, attended wedding but had nothing to do with reception which my parents put on at their house- therefore small gathering. On to honeymoon at Rhyl. Moved in to Cath's flat on Tatton Road North, a bit derelict but only four pounds a week. Now demolished. (My first girlfriend, Vivien, also married in the same month- only discovered in 2015!).

Bank not too supportive either (working at Disley branch by now, a happy experience apart from my marriage being so strongly taken exception to) - consequent transfer to Stockport office- as 1968 office now being rebuilt, location was an old National Westminster Bank branch (also since demolished). [Curiously, several years later the diminutive Royal Bank of Scotland succeeded in an opposed takeover of the much larger National Westminster... but more of that in the 90's). Just as bad as Underbank, the cellar didnt have enough air to light a match. Still not a happy branch.(On going situation!)

1973- holiday- visited June and Ron in Germany (Mulheim) - travelled by train for this one. We visited Philips museum at Eindhoven, Holland (Evoluon- long since closed) and saw their animated interactive monster, the first cybernetic sculpture, named Senster. Built in 1970 he was sadly taken apart in 1974. This large skeletal creature had complex head and neck movements triggered by doppler radar and microphones, which enabled him to react to his environment in a complex and rather endearing manner. Driven by an early 16 bit mini computer with paper tape input. I later found on the internet pictures of the skeletal remains taken in a field in 2003. There was also a large ball bearing run, and a model of the economy running if my emory serves on water valves.

30.9.73- day trip to York. We saw steam engine Flying Scotsman (4472) running as the Cider Express, and also visited the top of York Minster.

1973-74 The Winter of Discontent- lots of power cuts, and electricity rationed, in the cold cold Winter months. I kept going on peppermint tea! By now working at another small branch, Handforth.

In this decade I built myself a primitive video game which played Pong, and bought my first "computer", a little known device from Sinclair called the Sinclair Cambridge, which came with four books of programs to key in on the numeric keypad. Properly called a programmable calculator.

Soon moved to Wilmslow office and was shortly in charge of the little two man office (then) on Water Lane- slightly boring work but a lovely park nearby for warm Summer days lunches. During this period another two man office of the Bank, not far away and also in Cheshire, was the scene of a really nasty double murder of the two clerks on duty, and as a result lunch time cover by way of an extra staff member was to be provided from then on.

Visiting Wilmslow more than a decade later I was greeted by one of my former customers, whose family were all regular bank users. Good memory! Also one of the cashiers in the 90's was one of the girls I had worked with in the smaller branch which had been across the road- Caroline.

March 1974. Short break at Sandown, Isle of Wight.

July 1974- holiday on Isle of Bute (Rothesay)- nice place but bad trip to get there and it was very windy and cold.

1974 Bought century old semi detached house in Heaton Chapel, Stockport, Cheshire for Pounds 8400. A semi detached house built about 1900, with 3 bedrooms. First builder bankrupt in middle, house left a bit and finished by a second builder who seems to have had different ideas on layout, and also a lack of funds, resulting in an odd build. Much work needed to be done and we were short of cash, but over the years we managed to reroof and more or less kept the windows in reasonable trim. Carpeting was courtesy of a neighbour in the trade, a good friend for many years, Peter Swain, whose wife Marjorie assisted us when George decided to stop eating meat - Marjorie was a vegetarian.

1975- Holiday on Isle of Man- lots of railways! castle. visited local parliament building. Nice place to visit. We were fortunate to see the Ramsey Pier railway before it was demolished; and also some old railway sheds (complete with old carriages) which had been abandoned.

1976- Visited Sheringham in Norfolk, Lincoln and London.

After the death of the previous minister, Peter Denton, - in the most appropriate of all places, Canterbury Cathedral - a new minister was appointed to St Thomas in 1976, Roger Alderson, who made sweeping changes to the services. Although previously a "low" Church, Rev Alderson- whose first appointment this was- a married man- introduced extremely "high" church practices, full of ceremony and appearance. Many established worshippers left, to be replaced by folk from far away, travelling in by car.

1977 visited Llandidrod Wells, Wales where we found the dirtiest public toilets in Wales! There was a remnant of the wells water from a fountain - tasted awful.

1978- Visited Penzance, Cornwall and visited Lands End and St Ives.

1978- Passed old St Thomas records to the Archive Unit in Manchester Central Library.

24.12.78 visiting June and Ron in army barracks near York for Christmas hols. York Minster for the Festival of 9 lessons and carols 4pm

1979 holidays- Guernsey. Long way to go but nice place to visit. Stayed for the "Battle of the Flowers" which features numerous floats decorated with flowers.

I had been unhappy with the lack of any published history of St Thomas for a while, and visited the county archives of Cheshire and Greater Manchester, the Diocesan archives, and corresponded with- amongst others the then Bishop of St Helena (an old St Thomas boy). I wrote a history of the church, had fifty copies made up, several of which went to the local libraries, the remainder being sold in aid of church funds. (Now placed on the Web).

1979- The start of the long Conservative rule in Britain and the demise of the concepts of social conscience and charity, the growth of me first and executives ( aka big bosses) giving themselves major pay rises to the detriment of the overall economy.... an attitude which has become globally entrenched alas with no political alternative available. The loss of political alternatives with all politicians apparently in the pockets of business- effectively democracy quietly changed to oligarchy (corporate and educational esp Eton/Oxbridge).

By this time the excessive ceremony of St Thomas was proving too much and Cathy & I moved down the road to the next Church of England, St Pauls in Heaton Moor. I was soon a sidesman and both joined the Parochial Church Council.

Roger Alderson was later to leave the Church of England and move over to the Roman Catholic Church, a few years later returning to the Church of England.

And another item of change- in 1979 moved to the main Manchester branch of the bank, initially to work in the securities section.

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